…And Carolina Journal’s Suit Over Dell Records Continues
The Wilson case is taking some of the spotlight off the Dell deal, but recently, disagreement over Dell led to a Sanford Herald front-page story in which Chad Adams argued that secrecy of negotiations should be a big concern. On the day JLF and the NC Press Association filed a lawsuit over the Dell files, the Commerce Department released them. John Hood told a reporter that Carolina Journal had tried for two months to get the records but Commerce maintained it was checking with Dell about possible trade secrets included in the files. “First of all, that checking with Dell is taking a long time. Second, it is not Dell’s decision to determine what is a public record,” Hood said. The suit and release also prompted editorials in the Shelby Star and The Dispatch of Lexington. Meanwhile, CJ’s lawsuit is going forward in an effort to make sure that all Dell records have been released, and to make sure the state’s delay tactics aren’t used again. CJ experienced the same behavior last year over records pertaining to the failed attempt to secure Boeing’s jet manufacturing plant. Another media outlet got the same treatment over the Merck deal. On Thursday, Richard Wagner was interviewed by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution about CJ’s continuing push for a broadening of North Carolina public records law so that complete information is made public in a timely manner. Georgia’s law makes such information readily available, but there is an effort underway in that state to decrease the public’s access to information. On Friday, the Associated Press contacted Wagner on the same topic. Stay tuned.